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Environmental Cleanup Site Information (ECSI) Database Site Summary Report - Details for Site ID 277, University of Portland River Campus

This report shows data entered as of April 12, 2024 at 4:47:06 AM

This report contains site details, organized into the following sections: 1) Site Photos (appears only if the site has photos); 2) General Site Information; 3) Site Characteristics; 4) Substance Contamination Information; 5) Investigative, Remedial and Administrative Actions; and 6) Site Environmental Controls (i.e., institutional or engineering controls; appears only if DEQ has applied one or more such controls to the site).  A key to certain acronyms and terms used in the report appears at the bottom of the page.

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Environmental Cleanup Site Information (ECSI) Database Site Summary Report - Details for Site ID 277, University of Portland River Campus

General Site Information

Site ID: 277 Site Name: University of Portland River Campus CERCLIS No:
Address: 5828 N Van Houten Pl. Portland 97203
  County: Multnomah Region: Northwest
Other location information: Located in North Portland, along both sides of North Van Houten Place, on the north side of the Willamette River (RM 7.5), between the river and the base of Waud Bluff, approximately 4 miles north-northwest of downtown Portland.
Investigation Status: Listed on CRL or Inventory
Brownfield Site: Yes NPL Site: No Orphan Site: Yes Study Area: No
Property: Twnshp/Range/Sect: 1N , 1E , 18 Tax Lots:
  Latitude: 45.5742 deg. Longitude: -122.7354 deg.  Site Size: 51.6 acres
Other Site Names:
  Riedel Environmental Services - N Portland Yard
  Sakrete of the Pacific Northwest, Inc.
  Western Pacific Dredging/Drilling/Piledriving
  Willamette-Western Co.
  World Security Services Co.
  Portland Harbor Sediment Study
  University of Portland River Campus
  Triangle Park
  North Portland Yard Site

Site Characteristics

General Site Description: A 51.6-acre site along the Willamette River, at the base of Waud Bluff, in the University Park area of North Portland. The site's industrial history dates back to at least 1900 (nearly 50 industrial operations have occupied the site). Residential property and the University of Portland lie at the top of Waud Bluff. The site shares its northwestern property line with the McCormick & Baxter federal Superfund site. The site also lies within the boundaries of the Portland Harbor federal Superfund site.
Site History:
Contamination Information: (12/26/02 JMA/VCP) The site has been used for a variety of industrial activities since at least 1900. In the early 1970s the site was owned by Riedel International. Riedel's main business was dredging river bottoms, pole driving, and marine construction. In 1972 they became involved in hazardous waste spill cleanups, especially near railroads. They created Environmental Emergency Services (EES), a division of Riedel International. EES completed a RCRA Part B permit in 1984 which would enable them to build a 100' X 100' hazardous waste storage building. Neighbors protested so vehemently about the storage area that the city refused to grant a conditional use permit. EES decided to close the storage area and move it to another site. A RCRA closure plan was submitted to DEQ in March 1986. Soil sampling was conducted in December 1986. Samples taken from 6 feet ranged from 0.58 ppm to 230 ppm PCBs. Subsequent assessments at the site (GeoEngineers, 1/92; EMCON Northwest, 12/93; Hahn & Associates, 1995; Geraghty & Miller, 1995) indicated additional contamination concerns across much of the property. Sandblast grit and soils in several areas of the site contained elevated levels of toxic metals. Arsenic concentrations were of primary concern, although lead, copper, nickel, and chromium were also present. Groundwater in several areas was contaminated with arsenic, antimony, beryllium, chromium, copper, lead, and nickel. Soils in other areas of the site may also be contaminated with PCBs, chlorinated solvents, and PAHs. PCP-contaminated wastewaters had been stored in the former Hazardous Waste Storage Facility, and polychlorinated benzene compounds were detected in soils in this area, suggesting possible PCP decomposition. Underground storage tank excavations encountered high TPH concentrations, including PAHs and free petroleum.
Manner and Time of Release: Unknown source, volume and time of release(s). Several USTs on-site are known to have leaked.
Hazardous Substances/Waste Types: PCBs, toxic metals (As, Be, Sb, Be, Cu, Pb, Ni, Cr, Zn), PAHs, TPH, possible PCP (suspected off-site source), possible dioxins (suspected off-site and possible on-site source), methylene chloride, asbestos.
Environmental/Health Threats: Soil, groundwater, air, sediments, and surface water may serve as exposure or transport media for contaminants released at the facility. However, given the type and distribution of impacted media at the site, the potential for human or ecological exposure appears limited. Perhaps the most significant possible risk to human health is incidental ingestion and/or direct contact with contaminated soils. Perhaps the most significant possible risk to ecological receptors is from contaminated sediments.
Status of Investigative or Remedial Action: (12/26/02 JMA/VCP) Several early removal actions were conducted at the site. A soil removal plan was approved by DEQ 12/15/87, but there is no file info on an actual cleanup. RCRA Closure certifications were received 12/13/88 and accepted by DEQ on 1/31/89. EMCON supervised the removal of waste storage tanks, waste drums, some sandblast grit and misc. debris from the site, and removed leaking underground storage tanks. Hahn & Associates also removed petroleum USTs from the Sakrete area of the site. A sludge pond near the former Sakrete facility was backfilled. In May 1997 Triangle Park, a limited liability corporation associated with Zidell, signed a Prospective Purchaser Agreement (PPA) with DEQ, and purchased the property in June 1997. The PPA indemnified Triangle Park for environmental liability for groundwater contamination and sediment contamination at the site. The PPA required Triangle Park to perform a RI/FS for soil and perform any remedial action for soil contamination selected or approved by DEQ. Triangle Park committed to spend up to $750,000 on the PPA obligation. Triangle Park satisfactorily completed a Baseline Sediment Assessment in November 1997. DEQ approved Triangle's RI workplan in April 1999, and the initial field work for the RI was conducted in mid-1999. Phase II RI field work was conducted in spring 2000. During the RI field effort in June 1999, DEQ worked with Maul Foster, the contractor, to collect approximately 20 grab groundwater samples. DEQ officially designated groundwater and sediments at site to be an Orphan project in March 2001, so Orphan funds could be used to pay for groundwater and sediment investigation and cleanup. Maul Foster completed a Beneficial Water Use Determination and a Land Use Assessment for the site in December 2001. Maul Foster submitted a human health risk assessment report in December 2002 that idenified "hot spots" of contamination (highly contaminated soil) and soil that exceeded risk-based criteria. Based on the results of the risk assessment a site feasibility study was completed and a final remedy selected. The final remedy includes excavation of soil hot spots and capping the remaining soil with detected concentrations of contaminants below hot spot levels but above risk-based concentrations. DEQ’s final remedial action is described in the 2005 Record of Decision (ROD) for the site.
(04/01/14, DSB/CU&SA) The University of Portland acquired the property in 2008 pursuant to a 2006 DEQ Prospective Purchaser Agreement (PPA) Consent Judgment and a 2006 Bona Fide Prospective Purchaser’s Agreement (BFPPA) and Order with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The BFPPA with EPA required the the University of Portland to perform further site investigations and prepare an Engineering Evaluation and Cost Analysis to support a final EPA selected removal action for the site. Under the BFPPA and consistent with DEQ's 2005 ROD, the University of Portland removed the soil hot spots and capped the remaining soils that were found to be above risk-based levels. The BFPPA also required the university to regrade, cap, and revegetate the riverbank along the site shoreline. The University of Portland performed the EPA selected removal action in 2012 and 2013.
In 2014, the university recorded the DEQ and EPA-approved Easement and Equitable Servitudes (EES) for the property that prohibits residential use as well as agricultural food production use. The EES includes a Soil Management Plan that requires the university to maintain the soil caps and assure proper handling and disposal of any remaining contaminated soils excavated during construction, development or other activities. In addition, the University of Portland must monitor the shallow groundwater beneath the site for at least six years to assure the continued effectiveness of the removal action.
On March 6, 2014, EPA issued its Notice of Completion letter to the University of Portland based on its determination that the removal action had been performed in accordance with the requirements of the EPA Order. DEQ reviewed the conditions stated in the 2006 PPA and concludes that the work completed by the University of Portland satisfies the requirements of the DEQ Consent Judgment.

Data Sources: 1) July 1987 Riedel Environmental Services "RCRA Site Closure".
2) January 1992 GeoEngineers "Phase I Site Assessment".
3) December 1993 EMCON Northwest "Phase II Site Assessment".
4) July 1995 Hahn & Associates "UST Decommissioning Report".
5) September 1996 Maul Foster "Sample Summary".
6) April 1999 Maul Foster "RI Workplan for Soils".
7) November 2001 Maul Foster "Beneficial Water Use Determinate".
8) November 2001 Maul Foster "Land Use Assessment".
9) December 2002 Maul Foster "Human Health Risk Assessment".
10) February 2004 Maul Foster "Feasibility Study".
11) February 2005 DEQ "Record of Decision, Selected Remedial Action".
11) December 2006 AMEC "Removal Action Investigation Report".
12) March 2014 AMEC "Revised Removal Action Completion and Institutional Control Implementation Report".

Substance Contamination Information

Substance Media Contaminated Concentration Level Date Recorded
ACENAPHTHENE Soil 0.38 mg/kg 6/11/1999
ACENAPHTHYLENE Soil 14.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
ANTHRACENE Groundwater 2.1 ug/L 12/1/1993
ANTHRACENE Soil 12.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
ANTIMONY Groundwater 0.076 mg/kg 12/1/1993
ANTIMONY Soil 84.0 mg/kg 12/1/1998
ARSENIC Groundwater 0.19 mg/L 12/1/1993
ARSENIC Soil 303.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
BENZENE Groundwater 1.6 ug/L 12/1/1993
BENZO(a)ANTHRACENE Groundwater 59.0 ug/L 12/1/1997
BENZO(a)ANTHRACENE Soil 36.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
BENZO(a)PYRENE Groundwater 31.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
BENZO(a)PYRENE Soil 75.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
BENZO(b)FLUORANTHENE Groundwater 47.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
BENZO(b)FLUORANTHENE Soil 65.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
BENZO(ghi)PERYLENE Groundwater 31.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
BENZO(ghi)PERYLENE Soil 38.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
BENZO(k)FLUORANTHENE Groundwater 2.4 ug/L 12/1/1993
BENZO(k)FLUORANTHENE Soil 26.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
BERYLLIUM Groundwater 0.064 mg/L 6/11/1999
CADMIUM Soil 3.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
CHROMIUM Groundwater 1.55 mg/L 12/1/1993
CHROMIUM Soil 169.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
CHRYSENE Groundwater 33.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
CHRYSENE Soil 43.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
COPPER Groundwater 3.59 mg/L 12/1/1993
COPPER Soil 3140.0 mg/kg 12/1/1999
DIBENZO(a,h)ANTHRACENE Groundwater 34.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
DIBENZO(a,h)ANTHRACENE Soil 6.8 mg/kg 6/11/1999
DICHLOROETHANE,1,1- Groundwater 4.6 ug/L 12/1/1993
DICHLOROETHYLENE,1,2-CIS- Groundwater 1.4 ug/L 12/1/1993
DICHLOROPROPANE,1,2- Groundwater 0.8 ug/L 12/1/1993
DIESEL - FUEL OIL Groundwater 5.2 ug/L 12/1/1993
DIESEL - FUEL OIL Soil 26,000.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
DI-n-BUTYL PHTHALATE Soil 1.8 mg/kg 12/1/1993
FLUORANTHENE Groundwater 77.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
FLUORANTHENE Soil 79.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
FLUORENE Soil 6.7 mg/kg 6/11/1999
GASOLINE Groundwater 157.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
INDENO(1,2,3-cd)PYRENE Groundwater 34.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
INDENO(1,2,3-cd)PYRENE Soil 30.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
ISOPROPYLTOLUENE,p- Groundwater 5.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
ISOPROPYLTOLUENE,p- Soil 44.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
LEAD Groundwater 0.74 mg/L 12/1/1999
LEAD Soil 4260.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
METHYLENE CHLORIDE Soil 1.26 mg/kg 12/1/1993
NAPHTHALENE Groundwater 2.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
NAPHTHALENE Soil 22.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
NICKEL Groundwater 1.34 mg/L 12/1/1993
NICKEL Soil 140.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
OIL - LUBRICATING Groundwater 9940.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
OIL - LUBRICATING Soil 23,000.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
PCBs Soil 4.3 mg/kg 6/11/1999
PENTACHLOROBENZENE Soil 1.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
PENTACHLOROPHENOL Soil 18.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
PHENANTHRENE Groundwater 19.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
PHENANTHRENE Soil 51.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
PYRENE Groundwater 86.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
PYRENE Soil 120.0 mg/kg 6/11/1999
TETRACHLOROBENZENE,1,2,4,5- Soil 1.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993
TETRACHLOROETHYLENE Groundwater 1.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
TOLUENE Groundwater 0.021 ug/L 6/11/1999
TRIBUTYLTIN Sediment 32,000 ug/kg 11/20/1997
TRICHLOROETHANE,1,1,1- Groundwater 5.1 ug/L 12/1/1993
TRIMETHYLBENZENE,1,2,4- Soil 34.0 ug/kg 12/1/1993
TRIMETHYLBENZENE,1,3,5- Soil 39.0 ug/kg 12/1/1993
VINYL CHLORIDE Groundwater 2.0 ug/L 12/1/1993
XYLENEs Soil 25.0 ug/kg 6/11/1999
ZINC Groundwater 5.59 mg/L 12/1/1993
ZINC Soil 9700.0 mg/kg 12/1/1993

Investigative, Remedial and Administrative Actions

Action Start Date Compl. Date Resp. Staff Lead Pgm
OPERATION & MAINTENANCE  (Primary Action) 03/22/2019   Sarah Van Glubt
View Full Report Showing Action History

Key to Certain Acronyms and Terms in this Report:

You may be able to obtain more information about this site by contacting Sarah Van Glubt at the Northwest regional office or via email at If this does not work, you may contact Ximena Cruz Cuevas (503) 229-6811, or via email at or contact the Northwest regional office.